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A camera phone is a mobile phone which is able to capture photographs and often record video using one or more built-in digital cameras. The first camera phone was sold in 2000 in Japan, a Sharp J-SH04 J-Phone model, although some argue that the SCH-V200 and Kyocera VP-210 Visual Phone, both introduced months earlier in South Korea and Japan respectively, are the first camera phones.
Most camera phones are simpler than separate digital cameras. Their usual fixed-focus lenses and smaller sensors limit their performance in poor lighting. Lacking a physical shutter, some have a long shutter lag. Photoflash is typically provided by an LED source which illuminates less intensely over a much longer exposure time than a bright and near-instantaneous flash strobe. Optical zoom and tripod screws are rare and none has a hot shoe for attaching an external flash. Some also lack a USB connection or a removable memory card. Most have Bluetooth and WiFi, and can make geotagged photographs. Some of the more expensive camera phones have only a few of these technical disadvantages, but with bigger image sensors (a few are up to 1″), their capabilities approach those of low-end point-and-shoot cameras. In the smartphone era, the steady sales increase of camera phones caused point-and-shoot camera sales to peak about 2010 and decline thereafter. Most model lines improve their cameras every year or two.
Most smartphones only have a menu choice to start a camera application program and an on-screen button to activate the shutter. Some also have a separate camera button, for quickness and convenience. A few camera phones are designed to resemble separate low-end digital compact cameras in appearance and to some degree in features and picture quality, and are branded as both mobile phones and cameras.
The principal advantages of camera phones are cost and compactness; indeed for a user who carries a mobile phone anyway, the addition is negligible. Smartphones that are camera phones may run mobile applications to add capabilities such as geotagging and image stitching. Also smartphones can use their touch screen to direct their camera to focus on a particular object in the field of view, giving even an inexperienced user a degree of focus control exceeded only by seasoned photographers using manual focus. However, the touch screen, being a general purpose control, lacks the agility of a separate camera’s dedicated buttons and dial(s).

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